Gung Hei Fa Choy! Happy New Year!

Out with the year of the pig; in with the year of the rat.

It’s been a few days since I’ve checked in so much has happened. Our saga begins with the Superbowl…

Almost no one predicted the upset that this game delivered. Despite the fact that I’d taken note of Eli’s evolving leadership skills , I still fully expected Brady and the Pats to win. I think Chris Berman was the only one to pick the G-men, although Keyshawn did coin the nickname “DreamKiller” for Eli “should he win.”

We had a mess o’ good food including pulled pork Carolina style smoked right here in the city. Coleslaw, deviled eggs “one of the most underrated hors d’oeuvres” according to one kind guest, hot spinach and artichoke dip, a cool pitcher of Jamaica or agua fresca and lots of beer. Finished off with stunned silence, triple chocolate chip cookies, and more drinking.

Quote of the game came from Bob when Eli threw the game winning touchdown against incredible odds, the camera pans to….PEYTON in the booth. Bob: “Poor Eli’s thinking what the fuck do I have to do?! I take a wild card team against the unbeaten Pats into the last minutes of the game and throw an unbelievable pass for the game-winning TD – and I still can’t get no love!” (I’m paraphrasing, but you get the point.)

Well, it was stunned silence here in the LD. Even the crackheads in the alley were quiet. Eventually I lost my voice, from all the yelling, I thought.

Black Monday

I spent most of the day in bed. I hoped against hope that maybe if I didn’t wake up, it never happened. I refused to turn on the computer, the TV or even to answer calls. No outside contact to break the spell. But, I felt really wiped out. And I started to cough. And cough.

A Not-so-Super- Tuesday: Jabba the Hut Arrives

By now astute readers may have guessed it was not just my yelling or my depression over the outcome that kept me in bed. I was pretty sure I was fighting something so we went easy at the gym, had dim sum and went to vote. I saw Obama signs in Chinatown and laughed that Chinese people might be voting for an African American if they thought “Obama” was actually a Chinese name. “O-bah-mah maybe he’s from the North?”

But, just to beat back my ever present cynicism, a sprightly older Chinese man paraded in front of the polling place with an Obama placard. I wished I could say “Yes, We Can” in Cantonese! (Anyone? Best I can do is Si, se puede.)

After voting, I was declining.


In fact, at one point I staggered to the bathroom and shrieked when I looked in the mirror and something like Jabba looked back at me. My neck had swollen on both sides so that I resembled something alien. And then the chills started. And my head felt like it would explode. I kept my eyes mostly shut to keep my eyeballs from popping out.

We called my father-in-law and got me on antibiotics, (at this point one of us was healthy enough to go out) and ameliorative drugs of all sorts and settled in to the sofa with blankets and pillows to watch Super Tuesday results.

Wow. Fever raged, Buchanans bellowed, (imagine who spawned Pat AND Bay?!) and Matthews and Olberman entertained.


A blur.


Official kick off to the Chinese New Year. We’d made reservations at the “Mr. Big Stuff” table for six or so. Unfortunately, one friend had to tend to his friend whose mother passed, I was sick as a dog…it ended up being a very small party. I hope you guys enjoyed it anyway!

Now that I’m well enough to be vertical a few minutes at a time and not sleeping 18 hours a day, I’ve begun to wash, bleach, throw out old food, etc. And, of course, my caretaker di tutti caretakers (I think that means top of the heap) is in bed, bundled, shivering and we’re trying to keep his fever under 100.

I’m tenuously back amongst the living. Jabba is gone, my neck is nearly normal now.

Have lots to write about and will do so as cement-head permits. For now GUNG HEI FA CHOY!

Lots of pork-a-licious posts coming to send off our Year of the Pig. Though we love our pig, we only have to remember Ratatouille a rat in the kitchen can be a good thing. At least on screen.

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Whether it's Food & Cooking, Sports, Film, Travel or the Business of Writing can find it all through this page. Use this sidebar and the links below to go directly to whatever strikes your fancy. Jacqueline Church's Facebook profile

Where I’ve been seen, published, cited, syndicated…

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August 22 - Courtney Hunt's acclaimed film Frozen River at the Coolidge Corner. See Diversions for more.

Caught my eye…

  • The Audubon Insectarium opens in New Orleans. See Getting Down with All that Skitters.
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On Women and Work

Read my contributions to The Glass Hammer a new blog for executive women.


  1. Tales of the Cocktail may be over but the fun continues. Check the blogs and podcasts for all the news that fit to drink!
  2. The Maori art of facial tatooing is called moko. It is a powerful expression of tribal identity which has only recently enjoyed a resurgence as the colonial Christian prohibitions against it have lessened. Go to the Peabody Essex Museum for this rare opportunity to catch a glimpse of this amazing cultural tradition. The documentary I saw at Sundance years ago on moko, was one of the most powerful films I have ever seen.
  3. The Audubon Insectarium is a new and top-notch attraction in New Orleans. We passed by it and wondered why we'd missed it before. Turns out it's just now opening. No time this last trip, but it's on the list for the next time. Check here for info.

What's on my list?

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